Saturday, May 1, 2010

Mixed Feelings

                                    Jan Frederick Portielje



Victoriana at its best, in mood and dress and pose.
But why, I ask myself, are they in dark and mournful clothes?
If there's been a death, the faces simply don't reflect it,
And Death was such in those days everybody would respect it.
Yet here there's a delightful child with a smile upon her face,
And Mother looks serene and calm, exuding charm and grace!
The Mother's hand is graceful, upraised in a guiding way
Poised to point-out a tricky word, gently, as though in play.
It's a scene of domesticity, sweet and innocent.
Yet full of gloom and shadows and something malevolent.
The cloak that's hanging to the right and draping on the couch,
Appears to threaten as it looms with an almost dominant crouch.
How Victorians loved pictures that told a story too!
One feels compelled to study them to pick-up any clue.
Contrast this with the scene below, so natural, so light,
Painted by the same artist, but so relaxed and bright!

1 comment:

Inay said...

uhummmm. But you cannot compare the classic one to a country life. It is different.
an English way of living is different from what Australian out back is. (for just a simile)

Both painting is beautiful. both speaks of love and caring. And they both live in two different world.

So honestly speaking, serenity vested on both of them.